She watched as the small vehicle pulled out of the driveway,
and a hand, caught between a child and an adult waved out the window—
the same hand that would hold dusty textbooks and injured blackbirds
because she knew her daughter would fall in love. She prayed those hands would never
hold a broken heart.
After her daughter left, she grew lonely. The new furniture replaced empty spaces. Phantom
pains, they called them. At night, she befriended the leaky faucets because they liked to sing
sorrowful songs. They often sang duets with the eerie silence, and if she was feeling the blues
on a particular day, she would sing too. It made her feel not so alone.
The day her daughter returned, she hugged her mother. She hugged her with the same arms
she hugged the world with. The same arms that connect to hands that once held dusty textbooks and broken birds.
—Sarah Boland is a creative writing major at Eastern Washington University. In her free time she enjoys writing poetry, eating too much ice cream and pondering the finer things in life. Her other work can be found published in Northwest Boulevard.